March 16, 2013
I am a little late posting. I determined the location for the door connectors on the A pillar. The hole was cut. Then the opening was used to mark the corresponding hole on the door. That hole was cut and the contact strip was mounted. The wires had to be soldered to the pins. The harness for the window switch and relays was completed. The hole for the emergency door release was cut in the door and the boot was fitted.
Monday it was warm enough to do some work. I used the original glass to align the rear channel of the driver's door and locked it in place. The front guide was tweaked until it was in line with the glass. The glass was then placed in the channels and the front channel was positioned and tightened. Finally, the power window assembly was installed and adjusted. It rolls down fine. Going up is a little rough and, with the trim installed, a little noisy. It is close and I am hoping a little fine tuning will get it.
It got up into the low 60's today, so I did a little bit more checking on the rear ends.
The axles on the 41 were pulled. I am glad I resisted the temptation to just forget the ratio and open carrier and run the rear as is. The tubes were full of crap. It would only require one piece of the pile of rust scale getting into a bearing to ruin your day.
Everything I discovered today plus what I discovered previously points to an 8.5 rear end under the 41.
30 spline pinion
10 bolt cover (which interchanges with the one on the truck)
10 bolt ring gear with 3/4" head bolts (L most probably indicates LH threads)
The side gears, pinions, and cross shaft from the truck rear fit the 41's housing perfectly.
So, I am working with a name brand mail order house to determine what parts I need to swap out the gears and put a limited slip in. They are doing a bunch of research to assure what I have. Pulled the pinion yoke and it does have a 30 spline pinion, so I am fairly confident it is an 8.5. Checked parts and bolt in axles with 11 inch drums and 15/16" wheel cylinders is probably a 73 Olds rear end that could be bought in the Olds Cutlass. You could even get it in a big block Chevelle.
Since the weather was nice, I did go out to do something. The doors aren't going to do themselves. I don't really want to do it, but I have to. So, I have to start somewhere. I checked to see what the gaps are now. The body lines match up really well, so the door is probably located as close as I can get it. The gaps range from 0.000" (lower front) to approx. 1/4" (upper front and rear). So I am going to have to grind and weld in some areas and fill in others.
I decided to get the rest of the door squared away before I did the final fitting. The inside release handle seemed to be the easiest. I had already done this on the passenger door, so I knew pretty much what needed to be done.
I located where the door needed to be cut. I drilled and filed it out. I cut down a 1/4" x 3/4" bolt. The bear claw hole was tapped. Double nut and voila, it works. The strange thing is that the link on the passenger side had to be lengthened to fit. The driver side link fit without modification.
The time has come to figure out what to do with the rear end.
The cover was pulled off the rear end in the car. I knew that it was about 2.5:1 41-17 is 2.41:1. Less than 2.73:1, so the carrier won't work with a better gear. Beside that bad news, the PO didn't have any gear lube in the rear end. Lots of rust. When I went to check the number of axle splines, I realized this is not a C-clip rear end. May have been out of an Olds. Might also explain the 11" brakes. 28 splines; not the best but good for the street.
So, I pulled the cover off the rear end in the remains of the truck where the engine came from. Good news, better news, and so-so news. 41-12 gears, so it will take aftermarket ring and pinion. The better part is that 41-12 is 3.42:1. A good street gear. The so-so part is that it has 30 spline axles. I am not sure if the parts will interchange or not. More research.
If the parts will interchange, the 3.42:1 gears and carrier will go in the 41 rear end. I will either put the 2.41:1 parts in the truck rear end if I decide to sell it as a trailer kit. The carriers will have to fit the housings and the 30 spline side gears will have to fit the 2.41:1 carrier. The 3.42:1 set will get a locker to replace the open gears.